Salungguhit: Cloak of Secrecy, Act of Treachery

The negotiations on the Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MoA-AD) between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has rightly raised suspicions on the government’s sincerity in forging peace in Mindanao. An agreement seeking to expand the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao to accommodate the MILF should have involved consultations with all stakeholders – particularly the communities to be affected. With this cloak of secrecy, it appears that the government attempted to railroad the MoA-AD with the MILF, in a way that seeks to deceive the latter and at the expense of the Filipino people – who are kept clueless about the contents of the deal. After the MoA was blocked by the Supreme Court, and calls for Congressional investigations are gaining momentum, the Arroyo government is set to once again invoke “executive privilege.”

Vol. VIII, No. 27, August 10-16, 2008

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